Farm to School

Farm to school represents a convergence of the other key focal areas of local procurement, infrastructure, and food access.  We've chosen to let it stand on its own, however, because it may represent the single biggest opportunity to impact these areas while also addressing one of the most pressing challenges: that 24 percent of our children our classified as food insecure.  

Considering the access we have to abundant agricultural resources in the county, and the potential to collaborate with active health foundations and county-wide education initiatives like Horizon Education Alliance, implementing a successful farm to school initiative is a question of how, not if.

From the National Farm to School Network

Farm to school enriches the connection communities have with fresh, healthy food and local food producers by changing food purchasing and education practices at schools and preschools.
Students gain access to healthy, local foods as well as education opportunities such as school gardens, cooking lessons and farm field trips. Farm to school empowers children and their families to make informed food choices while strengthening the local economy and contributing to vibrant communities.
Farm to school implementation differs by location but always includes one or more of the following: 
  • Procurement: Local foods are purchased, promoted and served in the cafeteria or as a snack or taste-test; 
  • Education: Students participate in education activities related to agriculture, food, health or nutrition; and 
  • School gardens: Students engage in hands-on learning through gardening.

Related Topics: child nutrition; food literacy; edible schoolyard

Examples in Action: Memphis City Makeover; Food Day 2014

References: Indiana Farm to School Network; USDA Farm to School programs